Archive Notice - OSHA Archive

NOTICE: This is an OSHA Archive Document, and may no longer represent OSHA Policy. It is presented here as historical content, for research and review purposes only.

OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at

September 9, 1985

Richard F. Andree, CSP, P.E. Ph.D.
Executive Vice President
Lovell Safety and Health Management Consultants, Inc.
161 William Street
New York, New York 10038

Dear Dr. Andree:

This is in response to your letter concerning the memorandum which provided Occupational Safety and Health Administration Regional Administration with a clarification of 29 CFR 1926.750(b)(1)(iii).

The May 22, 1984, clarification of 29 CFR 1926.750(b)(1)(iii) provides our most current position on the use of synthetic or fiber ropes as a safety railing. Our past experience with synthetic or fiber rope used as a guardrail system disclosed that the sag between the vertical supports was excessive and did not provide adequate employee protection against falls. However, we have forwarded a copy of your letter to OSHA's [Directorate of Standards and Guidance] for their consideration when the applicable subparts are revised.

If we can be of further assistance, please let us know.


John B. Miles, Jr., Director
[Directorate of Construction]

[Correction 6/20/2005. See OSHA Directive CPL 02-01-034 "
Inspection policy and procedures for OSHA's steel erection standards for construction" published on 3/22/2002 for the current policy on OSHA's steel erection standards (1926 Subpart R) for construction.]